Protest in Cairo
Photo: AFP
US Consulate in Benghazi after attack
Photo: AFP

Clashes continue in Cairo ahead of mass protest

Egyptian officials fear protesters angered by anti-Islam film will try to break into US Embassy in Cairo Friday. Meanwhile, British report claims State Department was alerted 48 hours prior to Libya attack

Egyptian officials said Friday it is feared that protesters will try to break into the US Embassy in Cairo later today as part of the "Million-man Protest" against the anti-Islam film that ignited riots in the Middle East this week, the London-based al-Sharq al-Awsat newspaper reported.


Islamic officials said Friday's protests will not be violent and that they are working to create "human shields" to protect the embassy building in Cairo's Garden City neighborhood.


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Meanwhile, Arab media reported that clashes between security forces and the protesters outside the embassy are still ongoing. The al-Youm al-Sabaa newspaper reported that many protesters were arrested in the Tahrir Square area and near the embassy after hurling stones at security forces.


Riots also reached Kuwait. Some 500 people are protesting outside the US embassy waving al-Qaeda flags and calling, "Obama, we're all Osama." 


Also Friday, Britain's Independent newspaper exposed details on a security breach which may have led to the death of US Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens and three embassy staff in Benghazi on Tuesday.

ההפגנה אתמול מול שגרירות ארה"ב בקהיר (צילום: AP)

Thursday's protest outside US embassy in Cairo (Photo: AP)


The newspaper reported that according to senior diplomatic sources, the US State Department had credible information 48 hours before mobs charged the consulate in Benghazi, and the embassy in Cairo, that American missions may be targeted, but no warnings were given for diplomats to go on high alert and "lockdown", under which movement is severely restricted.


On Thursday, the US identified two additional victims of the deadly attack on the as former Navy SEALS who died trying to protect their colleagues.


US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty died in Tuesday's assault which also killed Stevens and Sean Smith, a State Department information management officer.


"Our thoughts, prayers, and deepest gratitude are with their families and friends. Our embassies could not carry on our critical work around the world without the service and sacrifice of brave people like Tyrone and Glen," Clinton said in a statement.


The statement identified both Woods and Doherty as former Navy SEALS with lengthy experience in Iraq and Afghanistan. It did not say in what capacity they were working in Benghazi.


UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon condemned the anti-Islam film that depicted Prophet Muhammad in an unfavorable light and accused its creators of trying to encourage bloodshed.


The UN's spokeswoman stated that Ban was "deeply troubled" by the riots that broke out around US embassies in Libya and other Middle Eastern states, noting there was no justification for "such murderous violence."


Reuters and AFP contributed to this report




פרסום ראשון: 09.14.12, 10:31
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